Racism slam dunk does not free us all

newsroom@islandpacket.comMay 5, 2014 

What we have observed in recent days is the light at the end of the tunnel. We haven't, as a nation, reached the end of the tunnel, but now we have some hope that together we will.

Adam Silver, new commissioner of the National Basketball Association, and NBA leadership, did more than protect the integrity of the NBA. He moved our great country closer to the end of the tunnel -- true equality among us all.

By his stiff penalty for Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling's racist comments, Silver showed us that you could slam the door on racism, regardless of the amount of money offenders have in their pocket.

Negative racial attitudes and behaviors remain a problem in our society today. Too many assume that by avoiding the use of the "n" word they cannot be a racist, without realizing that racist attitudes are expressed in a multitude of ways. That includes the manner in which people refer to, show discomfort around, and consciously or unconsciously avoid being in the presence of "people of color," as well as the so-called jokes we repeat, and our failure to respond to the racial comments asserted by others.

Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel stated, "The opposite of love is not hate; the opposite of love is indifference."

Charles L. Richman

Fripp Island

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